Friday, April 27, 2007

And the journey continues…

This whole little journey we’ve embarked on has taught me and is still teaching me so much about life and myself. I’m learning to live and enjoy life now. And I’m also learning that I’m stronger than I ever thought possible and that every day I get to spend with my husband and child are precious and wonderful.

It’s been a tough couple days here…filled with many ups and downs. David is doing splendidly…so no worries people. But it’s been a long couple weeks. Firstly, we had news that a friend of some dear friends of ours lost their 2-year old son. The whole story broke my heart and made me realize how tenuous and precious life is for everyone. I went home and smothering Alec with hugs and kisses and when he later had a meltdown about something I can’t quite remember anymore, I just smiled. Because he’s two and he has his up-days and his down-days. But he’s here…making our life exciting and I’m honored to have him in our life and watching him grow into the person he’s becoming. And that night he just snuggled up on my chest and as I held him close I shed a quiet tear. A tear for that little boy who never got to have his first kiss or had his first day of school. And I also shed a tear out of joy. Joy that I have this amazing little person in my life and how lucky and blessed I am. It still makes me sad to think about it now. I feel sad for that poor couple and the loss of their own precious little boy.

The next big emotional hurtle for the week was our glorious basement! Ah the joys of homeownership. We have begun the slow progression of tossing all the crazy crap that we’ve accumulated over the years. Note: We’re not only artists…but we’re both nostalgic about pretty much everything! Which means we’ve accumulated an amazing amount of stuff in the last 15 years. As we started slowly going through everything, and as the stacks of boxes started getting smaller, we began noticing a bit of a moisture issue against the walls of our basement. Nothing too serious we thought. It’s not like our basement was damp or anything. But we figured we should have someone come out and take a look at it since we were hoping to begin framing out and finishing our basement over the next couple years. Little did we know we had one hell of a shocker coming our way! We had a company come out and check it out and boy oh boy do we have issues. Big issues.

Our home is about 100 years old. So we knew there would be a few issues with having an older home. And we knew the basement had some issues before we purchased it…because they put in a drain tile. But before we ever even purchased the home…we had a specialty company come out and check the basement out and he gave it a thumbs up! Boy was he wrong. I’m unsure if he was just an idiot, or the issue was concealed very well, or that he just didn’t give a rip and was helping our real estate agent sell a home. But long story short…we have issues. We have horizontal cracks on all four walls, which is bad. VERY bad my friends. If we hadn’t caught this…our walls would have started sagging inward and we would have been in a whole other world of hurt. But even as it is. It’s not good. Our home is a wonderful old bungalow that had the misfortune of being built in the 20’s when most people didn’t bother with tarring or putting gravel around the basement walls. And since we live in a region that is considered the Valhalla of basement issues due to the mud like consistency of the dirt around here. We’re screwed. Our cinderblock bricks over time have developed little fissures which have opened up and the nice little open spaces inside each brick which was meant to help naturally insulate our basement…have filled with water. And continued to fill with water…so now if you take a water measurement of our bricks in the basement they are pretty much full of water all the way to ground level. Hence why our basement has been so insanely cold. Also, our groovy drain tile is basically useless because it was installed incorrectly and will have to be dug out and replaced. I’m not too sad to see that go. Since it was installed incorrectly, we have a steep incline around our entire basement about 18” wide, which made putting anything up against the wall damn near impossible. So, we will be having a company come out and dig up our crappy drain tile and put in nice new drain tile which will be flush with the floor! Yippee. We also will be getting a new sub-pump and this snazzy new de-humidifier thing that connects to the wall of the house but is more effective and uses minimal electricity. Which is a good thing as well. We will also have a crew, of what the ladies at work are hoping to be a group of hunky manly construction workers, don’t hold your breath ladies. And these fine gentlemen will dig a 12-24” trench around our entire home and ALL the way down the walls. Which will then be tarred and the space will be filled up with gravel. And then we should be good to go! I guess I should have stopped bitching about how messed up our finances were, eh? I think the universe decided to gently point out to me that it can always be worse and to just appreciate where you’re at. I’m not quite as panicked as I thought I would be. This has to be done. We caught it before we were completely screwed and somehow it will all work out. We will get through this like everything else and somehow the finances will all be ok. But damn…this sucks. On the upside…we’ve now become inspired to get the basement cleared out in a jiffy. We opted to become part of this company’s on-call list. This means that if they finish a job early, and are in our region, they will call us and be at our place the next day. Since the company pays the workers for a specific time period, the guys get paid for the entire time, even if a job is done early. And being on the on-call list, they can send the crew over to our place and the company gets another job in and doesn’t have to pay the workers to sit around. This is going to cut a couple grand off the total, but we will only have 12-48 hours notice before they arrive. And we they do, they’ll need a 3-5’ space around the entire basement perimeter. Holy crap!

So, it’s been one hell of a week. But we got through it and everything will work out. Hopefully next week will be a tad less uneventful. Take care and enjoy the weekend. I know what we’ll be doing! Basement here we come…


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